In this psalm of David’s, two elements stand out: the poor, and our enemies. In the New Testament, Jesus says we will always have the poor among us, and as we care for those who cannot care for themselves, it is as if we are caring for the needs of Jesus Himself. We are blessed so we can provide for others, and in providing, we receive blessing. This is a great win-win situation. Blessed is the one who considers the poor! In the day of trouble the Lord delivers him; the Lord protects him and keeps him alive; he is called blessed in the land, you do not give him up to the will of his enemies. We still have the poor, but do we have enemies in modern days?
Some in active military service will face real adversaries. For others, time – too much or the lack of it, can be considered a challenging foe. Disease and depression are both described as something we need to fight. Peter, as a follower of Jesus, reminds us that our enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking to devour us. We do have enemies. But we also have hope: God does not give us up to the will of our enemies. This is a great reason to praise!
The thing or situation the enemy might use to bring about fear can be the very thing that leads us closer to God, the One we can rely on at all times. I love being active. I thrive while running, walking, riding my bike, and truth be known, I even enjoy cleaning our home. All these things came to a screeching halt the day of my bike accident. At the time of this revision I’m into the third month of immobility. The enemy would win if I allowed my inability to physically walk rob me of my close “walk with the Lord.” Discontentedness is a slippery slope to self-pity which can lead to all kinds of unhealthy attitudes. How thankful I am to God who draws me near. Praising Him for what I do have rather than dwelling on what I do not, keeps me from a pit and it will do the same for you.
No matter what the enemy may try, when we are in God’s family we are blessed into everlasting – forever to live with the God of forever! Even with real enemies around him, David remained focused on God and concluded this psalm by praising Him. Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel, from everlasting to everlasting! Amen and Amen.